How to Impress Your Boss and Coworkers on Your First Day of Work
So you landed the job. Kudos. Enough with the stuffy suits, the chronic, paranoid glances at the clock, the insecure second-guesses about what you said…or did. (Are you sure you should have scratched your arm during that question about what you like in a boss?) It’s done and you won…Or is it? And have you? In many respects, you should treat your first day of work like you’re going back for another interview, remembering the ultimate rule for both situations: don’t worry. Axe the anxiety and stick to these tips on how to impress your boss and your coworkers as soon as you’ve started your new job:
Be on time…In fact, be early
Just as you’re advised to show up 10 to 15 minutes early for a job interview, the same goes for your first day of work. And even thoughyou’ve timed how long it takes for you to get to your new place of employment, you should still set that alarm 15 minutes earlier than you think you need it. After you’ve been working for a while and you’re confident enough in how much time it takes you to commute, then you can catch a little more shuteye.
Dress to impress
You probably took note of how people dressed at your new office when you were interviewing, and HR may have even told you what the dress code was. Still, it’s better to be overdressed than underdressed on your first day of work. Even if jeans and a T-shirt are allowed every day, show up in dress pants and a dress shirt (unless your hiring manager explicitly told you not to – then you might look like you weren’t listening). If everyone’s in business casual, wear a tie. The same applies if you happen to start on Casual Friday. Dressing up onedegree above everyone else on your first day of work shows that you’re taking your new opportunity seriously. There’s no easier lesson in how to impress your boss and coworkers than this one.
Research your role and your employer
Obviously, you should’ve had a clear picture of what your responsibilities would be even before you applied to the job – and especially after you had your first interview. But, just as you learned more specifics moving through the interview process, you’re definitely going to uncover even more about how to do your duty once you actually begin work. In the meantime, before your first day of work, review your job description and any other information you have about your role. Then do even more digging into the company than you did before going to your first interview, and try to see how your role can really bolster the bottom line. Make notes of what you find and prepare to incorporate that information into the following tip.
As you begin your new job, don’t be afraid to ask questions and take notes. Doing so shows that you’re eager to do well, which in turn reinforces how much you appreciate being hired. Just be sure not to ask the same questions over and over again. That’s what the notes are for.
Take notes to remember important facts that you didn’t think to ask about. This goes not only for what your boss tells you, but also what your new coworkers tell you. Treat everyone’s advice as important, regardless of their rank.
Don’t just ask questions, of course. Converse with your new coworkers – and not just about work. Obviously, you shouldn’t cross any personal boundaries, but try to strike up some small talk about your interests and theirs. The quicker you develop more personable relationships with your coworkers, the sooner you’ll understand the office politics of the place – and the sooner you’ll have allies to help you navigate those waters.
Smiling makes it easier for people to get along with you. Think way back to when you had your first phone interview with the recruiter.Did you smile? You should have because, believe it or not, a smile can be “heard” over the phone, making the conversation more pleasant. So just imagine the effect in person. In fact, smiling lowers stress levels and, like laughter, is contagious. Studies have even shown that those who smile in their profile pictures on social media have more connections.
Stay – a little – late
Depending on the company you’re at, you probably have an official workday of about eight to nine hours. You should stick around for a bit during your first week or two to show that you’re making an effort to get up to speed as fast as you can. If you’re brand new, leaving right on the dot may make you look like you can’t wait to get out of there. After you’re settled in and have shown you can do your work successfully during regular hours, there should rarely be a need to hang back.
Remember they like you – they really like you
Finally, the most important thing to do on your first day of work is to remember that you were hired. You won out over possibly hundredsof applicants. The job is yours. If they didn’t want you there, you wouldn’t be there. Instead of asking yourself how to impress your boss, ask yourself how to impress your boss even more – not to mention your new coworkers too. Just follow the advice above, and you got this.